‘I am because we are; we are all one‘ says Archbishop Desmond Tutu as he describes the essence of the African philosophy of Ubuntu.
In his 1999 book No Future Without Forgiveness, Tutu gives a fuller explanation of the Ubuntu concept: ‘A person with Ubuntu is open and available to others, affirming of others, does not feel threatened that others are able and good, based from a proper self-assurance that comes from knowing that he or she belongs in a greater whole and is diminished when others are humiliated or diminished, when others are tortured or oppressed‘.
The world would be a transformed place if we practiced Ubuntu: there would be no war, no prejudice, no discrimination, no hatred, no bullying, no cheating, no oppression. It may seem like an impossible task, but we can all practice Ubuntu in our own little corners of the world; cultivating empathy and understanding of ‘the other’ will always pay dividends……..so let’s get started!
Here is a short video of Archbishop Tutu explaining Ubuntu in simple terms: